Defense Policies in the World War II Era
During World War II, Latvia
was one of three countries that faced constant battles during and
after the War. After the conclusion of World War II, Latvia was
occupied by Soviet Union forces under the Stalin regime. As Stalin
attempted to take over Latvia and other small countries like
Lithuania, there were many repercussions upon Latvia's involvement
in international affairs. Stalin did whatever he could to remove top
governmental officials who were from Latvia from posts. By removing
Latvian governmental officials, Stalin was able to effectively
eradicate any influence whatsoever that Latvia could have in the
international political sphere.
Events in the post-World War II era have largely shaped the way in
which the military of Latvia functions today. The military of Latvia
is centered on protecting the interests of Latvia and protecting it
from any potential overtaking by major sources of power in the
Contemporary Defense Policy in Latvia
Today, the National Armed
Forces make up the military force of Latvia. The defense strategy of
Latvia is to respond immediately to any threats or attacks. The last
draft to be conducted for the Latvian military was in 2005. Central
to the values shaping Latvia's military policy is the idea of
sovereignty and protecting the nation-state. The National Armed
Forces are comprised of multiple forces including the Naval Forces,
National Guard, Air Forces and Land Forces.
Latvia has signed onto the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and is
also part of the European Union. The security that Latvia now has is
at the highest that it has had throughout its history. Latvia is
also a member state of the United Nations, and this has a large
influence on its foreign relations policies.
Latvia has publicly stated that one of its top goals is to
strengthen its national security. Latvia attempts to be of
assistance in the international sphere in getting rid of
international threats when it knows about them.
The benefit to Latvia of being a part of the EU and NATO is that it
may be more able to focus on its own economic development. Because
Latvia now has heightened security from its allies in the EU and
NATO, Latvia will be able to focus on improving its own economic
interests. At the same time, Latvia continues to also develop its
own democratic system and national independence.
In the future, Latvia's foreign policy is committed to strengthening
its role in the EU and NATO. Latvia continues to attempt to be a
strong ally as part of these pacts. Latvia also seeks to develop
greater cooperation with other Baltic Sea countries like Lithuania.
There are no direct military threats that are currently impacting
Latvia's public national security policy states that it aims to
continue developing efficient military forces. It also seeks to
participate in the international military and attempt to sustain
peace-keeping operations abroad. Latvia also seeks to strengthen the
North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and also be a strong member of
the European Union.
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